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Every second counts – Especially Offshore

In emergencies, speed is crucial to improving the patient’s chances of survival. While emergency rescue is quick and smooth on land and going to one’s primary care provider a matter of course, being located miles off the coast presents major challenges. All offshore rescues by their very nature include a gap in time before professional help can be on site. The holistic WINDEAcare concept allows us to begin treatment during the long journey back to shore and arrival at the treating hospital.

What happens in an emergency

In an offshore emergency, the victim’s colleagues have a specific role to play: they will need to provide first aid for at least 30 minutes, but often longer. So that they are not left without help in this situation, the Emergency Medical Dispatch & Support Center is staffed with paramedic professionals. They support first responders as soon as they receive the emergency call by telephone or radio link and connect the wind farm to the telemedical center . Depending on the configuration status at the wind farm, audio, images and vital signs (ECG, oxygen saturation and blood pressure, etc.) are transmitted in real time and made available to the tele practitioners to make decisions and provide further instruction. As the rescue helicopter is making its way to the emergency site, the operations center gives the on-board crew an initial assessment of the situation.

Optimally, there would be a WINDEAcare trained emergency technician on the site 24/7 who can provide immediate professional treatment with telemedical support. Once the helicopter arrives, treatment can begin immediately with vital information exchanged with the operations center. Often, there’s is no place to land, so the paramedics and physician will be lowered by cable from the helicopter. As the patient is being taken on board, the operations center has already been working on identifying the appropriate hospital for treatment. The high skill of our helicopter crews allows all of the options available to modern emergency medicine to be used on offshore wind farms.

First responders are not left without support, but can also access psychosocial emergency care through the crisis intervention team at the Emergency Medical Dispatch & Support Center.

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